Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A Different Paperbag Book

I was surfing and saw this video at the Following the Paper Trail blog.  Laura does a wonderful tutorial on a different type of paper bag book.  I was surfing because I was looking for some gift ideas for Christmas and her how to video gave me the idea for the mini book I made for the best friend.  Becky and I have been best friends since high school.  When the idea came to me I wanted to be able to document our lives at different points over the last 35 years.  They would be events of significance and obviously ones of both of us for which I had pictures that I could use for the book.  This is the front of the book.  Becky loves sunflowers so I chose papers from a pad of K&Company papers I had.  Susan Winget is the designer and the paper pack was Spring Blossom.   One of the pages had a bike on it with a basket of flowers where the predominant flowers were sunflowers, just what Becky likes.  By the time I cut down the paper you mostly can just see the basket in the lower left corner and the flowers that cover the front and spine.  I used a matching green leaf patterned paper for the back that coordinated with the background behind the flowers.  I used some Tim Holtz distressed inks to ink up the edges of the pages and give them that shabby chic look.  In the spine I put a grommet to thread through the chain and charms that I added.

For the cover of the book I used the inside of a file folder.  If you have worked in an office you might be familiar with them.  They are red press board file folders with brown cardboard dividers in the middle, typically two or three dividers and are bound with really strong fabric across the spine to endure much handling and many papers in the file.  We were tossing some at work because they were starting to look pretty shabby on the outside, but the inside was still in relatively good shape.  Besides, I was going to cover it all with patterned papers.  I chose to cut the edges of the cardboard insert about 1/4 to 1/2 inch larger than the edges of the paper bags.  This provided about a 1/2 inch or so wide spine to affix the paper bags to.  The pages of the book are paper lunch bags.  I had a number of embellishments, but needed to pick up some others to make the book in its final form. For the front here I used a beautiful yellow butterfly, a metal plate in the upper right corner that says Best Friends and a remember when sticker in the lower left corner.  On the four corners of the book I used some Tim Holtz metal picture corners.  They worked perfectly and will help preserve the corners of the book and keep it from wearing out too quickly.  On the front I added a pretty glass looking button and on the back a grommet through which I tied some thin matching ribbon and affixed a small brass key to the end.  I then wrapped it around the end of the book and looped it around the button to be used as the book closure.

If you visit  Following the Paper Trail you will get the exact directions for how Laura puts together the paper lunch sacks.  I found it to be a very easy tutorial to follow and I made quick work of taping down the bottoms of the bags and attaching them together.  Then I had to choose coordinating papers from the paper pack.  I tried to coordinate colors as it was mostly floral papers that I was using. 

Once I got that done I started pulling pictures.  They start with our high school graduation pictures and proceed through our weddings, baby's, class reunions, trips back and forth, Christmas family photos, and pics of us with our families.  On the inside of the cover is a small envelope with a sentiment on vellum paper.  Our class song...Friends by Elton John was printed on vellum also and mounted to the left of our senior pictures.  The next pages mirror each other with a few pics of our weddings. I tried to mirror the photos, so one of her and her attendants, one of me and my attendants...you get the idea.  You also see ribbons sticking out of the bag pockets.  I put additional pictures on card stock and then put a grommet in the end of each card and looped an organza ribbon through it.

I also found some Jolee's embellishments for graduations, weddings, babies, etc. and added those to the pages as well.  I found that the paper bag bottoms that proved to be the short pages in between the regular sized pages were great for the embellishments or sentiments.  It allowed me to use more photos on the larger pages too.  I also used lots of different stickers and sentiments as well as stamping up and inking other sayings about friends and time and fixing those on the pages.  Additionally I stuck in some bling and more butterflies, because what flower garden is complete without butterflies.  The final two pages and the last pocket were mostly pics of Becky and me through the years.  Talk about a walk down memory lane...and boy the hairstyle and clothing changes in 35 years!  Good for lots of laughs for sure.  Great memories as well!  I hope she enjoyed receiving it as much as I enjoyed putting it together.

Until next time...Imagine, Create, Enjoy!